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Crews pump mud on Highway 101 after a mudslide Jan. 13, 2018, in Montecito, California. Photo: Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP

The first lawsuit has been filed over California’s deadly mudslides this month, naming as a defendant local utilities company Southern California Edison.

The suit, filed on Jan. 12 and amended on Tuesday to include the local water district as a defendant, was brought on behalf of three individuals and a boutique store alleging damages from the Jan. 9 mudslides, which killed at least 20 people and destroyed 65 homes in the Montecito area of Santa Barbara. Foley Bezek Behle & Curtis and Joseph Liebman, a real estate attorney, both in Santa Barbara, filed the suit along with Alex “Trey” Robertson of Robertson & Associates in Westlake Village, California. The complaint alleges negligence and public nuisance claims and seeks compensation for property damages and economic losses, plus an unspecified amount of punitive damages.

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Amanda Bronstad

Amanda Bronstad is the ALM staff reporter covering class actions and mass torts nationwide. She writes the email dispatch Critical Mass. She is based in Los Angeles.

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